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It’s not easier than it looks

Dry day today. My first day off work (well, technically, it’s already the 2nd as my mentor had previously gone shooting solo for a Filipino group that were on the rig a couple of days ago), and it’s sunny out. I wish I was filming. Yes, no matter how the blisters on my feet hurt, no matter how tired I feel, I still wished I was filming. So how did I get here? Let me tell you a story about a girl…
A little more than a year ago, I was fortunate to have made new friends while on an underwater clean up project in Kota Kinabalu, Sabah. From there on, a couple of us kept in touch and keeping in contact with one person led to a job prospect. That one person is now my mentor, Andy Chia, a well respected videographer (and pretty damn good photographer I should add) based in Kota Kinabalu, Sabah. Have you ever heard of DeeBee Studio? You should google it 🙂
So anyways, back to life on the rig. It’s just been over a week since I arrived, feeling excited yet afraid of what may come. I mean, I’ve left my life behind in Kuala Lumpur, said yes to a job which I’m entirely new at, bade farewell to my family & hopped onto the plane to get here. It still feels surreal after so many days. And I’ve been away from home for 20 days. Do I miss home? Surprisingly, not yet. But that’s only because the people that I’ve gotten to know since arriving in Sabah have been really amazing, wonderful people, who have gone all out to make me feel at home.
So, training began in KK, where I arrived on 27th April 2014. A day later I was thrown into work. Only it didn’t feel like work, it literally felt like a working holiday. So I spent days in front of the iMac learning to edit, and a couple of days in the salty water of Pulau Sapi getting used to the underwater camera. It was okay, not too bad though but, diving & filming in Sipadan definitely feels different.
So, fast forward the broken regulator cap, the breaking of my fin strap, the rush to buying a new set of fins, plus the blisters I’ve now got on my feet (which don’t seem to be showing much improvement), I’m now left alone on the rig to learn what it takes to become an underwater videographer which is:- to follow 3 boat dives to Sipadan, come back and edit the footage, then present it the same night (to the group that went to Sipadan & anyone else who might be interested to watch). It’s tedious work and it’s nerve wrecking to have your videos judged by complete strangers night after night but every time I pop in the DVD, I pray that people will like the video and be interested in buying it as a nice memento.